EAU CLAIRE, Wis. — And then there were six. Concordia advanced six wrestlers to Day 2 after an intense opening day of competition at the NCAA Upper Midwest Regional at Wis.-Eau Claire.
The Cobbers ended the opening rounds of the two-day regional meet with 45.5 team points which was good for seventh place in the 15-team meet.
Senior 149-pounder Ty Johnson and sophomore 125-pounder Jake Nohre led the way for the Cobber crew as they both won their first two matches of the meet and advanced to the semifinals of their weight class.
Johnson amassed 21 match points in his two victories. He won by a score of 8-3 in a dominant opening match performance. The senior had to come from behind in his second match, but a thrilling four-point throw helped spur Johnson to a 13-9 win in the quarterfinals. He will look to build on his Day 1 results with a journey to the finals on Day 2.
Nohre went the entire first day without ever trailing on the scoreboard. He cruised to a 9-2 win to start his day, then applied a fast start and stayed strong to win 6-4 in the quarterfinals. Nohre squares off in the semifinals with returning All-American Mike Tortorice of Wis.-Whitewater . Nohre came up just short against Tortorice in the 2017-18 season, so he will be looking for a bit of revenge in his first bout on Day 2.
In addition to the two semifinalists, four Cobbers are still fighting through the wrestleback rounds. Benjamin Bogart, Bret Wilson, Travis Deegan, and Noah Carter all still have a chance to punch their ticket to the NCAA National Meet.
Despite taking losses early in the day, these four have been tremendously valuable for Concordia by earning abundant bonus points in the consolation bracket.
The two freshmen in the group, Wilson and Carter, each earned pins in the wrestlebacks today, as Wilson overcame an early deficit to shoulder his UW-Oshkosh foe in the second period in the 141- pound weight class. Meanwhile, Carter responded to a loss to top-seeded Konrad Ernst of Wis.-La Crosse at heavyweight by pinning the Pacific University heavyweight in just under five minutes. Carter added a decision victory after this pin to keep his inaugural Concordia season alive.
Bogart, making his very first NCAA Regional appearance in his second year of competition, also notched a pin on the day. He dispatched an opponent from Lakeland University early in the second-round consolation match, proving once again his ability to respond quickly and effectively to unavoidable tournament setbacks.
Deegan earned his bonus points before entering the consolation bracket. He won by technical fall in his first match of the day. After a tough loss in the quarterfinals, the Cobber senior had to use every ounce of energy and effort in the wrestlebacks. Once there, he kept his tournament going by scoring a crucial takedown as time expired in the third period which pushed the match into overtime He then added a match-clinching takedown in OT.
Sadly, one of the Cobber seniors took to the mat for the last time as Nick Gravdahl was eliminated in the second round of wrestlebacks.
Gravdahl pinned his first opponent, fell in a tough match to the highly-ranked Tanner Vassar of Augsburg and lost in a heart-breaker in the consolation.
Despite the loss, Gravdahl embodied the Concordia philosophy in his last match even as he has in all his matches as a Cobber. Gravdahl’s “team-first” attitude, humility, and toughness will be greatly missed.
UP NEXT: The Cobbers return to the mats on Saturday, Feb. 23 at 10 a.m. in the final day of the Upper Midwest Region Meet. The two seniors, two sophomores and two freshmen will strive to place in the Top 3 and earn their trip to Virginia for the NCAA National Meet and the chance to become an All-American.
NCAA DIII Regional Upper Midwest Results for Concordia-Moorhead
Jake Nohre (2-0) placed 6th and scored 8.0 team points.
Champ. Round 1 – Jake Nohre (Concordia-Moorhead) 2-0 won by decision over Kurtis DeGroot (Lakeland) 15-12 (Dec 9-2)
Quarterfinal – Jake Nohre (Concordia-Moorhead) 2-0 won by decision over AJ Schoenfuss (Wis.-Oshkosh) 22-10 (Dec 6-4)
Benjamin Bogart (2-1) placed 8th and scored 6.5 team points.
Champ. Round 1 – Benjamin Bogart (Concordia-Moorhead) 2-1 won by decision over Zack McDowell (Wis.-Oshkosh) 6-13 (Dec 3-1)
Quarterfinal – Sam Bennyhoff (Augsburg) 22-4 won by major decision over Benjamin Bogart (Concordia-Moorhead) 2-1 (MD 10-0)
Cons. Round 2 – Benjamin Bogart (Concordia-Moorhead) 2-1 won by fall over Mikael Kolosso (Lakeland) 4-7 (Fall 2:10)
Bret Wilson (1-1) placed 8th and scored 6.0 team points.
Champ. Round 1 – Matt Berlin (Wis.-Stevens Point) 26-10 won by decision over Bret Wilson (Concordia-Moorhead) 1-1 (Dec 8-3)
Cons. Round 1 – Bret Wilson (Concordia-Moorhead) 1-1 received a bye () (Bye)
Cons. Round 2 – Bret Wilson (Concordia-Moorhead) 1-1 won by fall over Wesam Alabed (Wis.-Oshkosh) 18-12 (Fall 3:48)
Ty Johnson (2-0) placed 6th and scored 8.0 team points.
Champ. Round 1 – ty johnson (Concordia-Moorhead) 2-0 won by decision over Jack Rathburn (MSOE) 12-12 (Dec 8-3)
Quarterfinal – ty johnson (Concordia-Moorhead) 2-0 won by decision over David Dudych (Wis.-Eau Claire) 22-13 (Dec 13-9)
Adam Jaeger (1-2) place is unknown and scored 0.5 team points.
Champ. Round 1 – Steve Bonsall (Chicago) 2-0 won by decision over Adam Jaeger (Concordia-Moorhead) 1-2 (Dec 4-0)
Cons. Round 1 – Adam Jaeger (Concordia-Moorhead) 1-2 won by decision over Kaleb Winebarger (Pacific (OR)) 0-2 (Dec 10-8)
Cons. Round 2 – Jerod Novak (St. John`s (MN)) 7-4 won by decision over Adam Jaeger (Concordia-Moorhead) 1-2 (Dec 5-3)
Travis Deegan (2-1) placed 8th and scored 6.0 team points.
Champ. Round 1 – Travis Deegan (Concordia) 2-1 tech fall over Anthony Kraan (Pacific (OR)) 0-2 (TF-1.5 3:09 15-0))
Quarterfinal – Lucas Jeske (Augsburg) 15-0 won by decision over Travis Deegan (Concordia-Moorhead) 2-1 (Dec 4-0)
Cons. Round 2 – Travis Deegan (Concordia) 2-1 won in sudden victory – 1 over Chase Schmidt (UW-Eau Claire) 18-13 (SV-1 6-4)
Nick Gravdahl (1-2) place is unknown and scored 3.0 team points.
Champ. Round 1 – nick gravdahl (Concordia-Moorhead) 1-2 won by fall over Partev Galstyan (St. Olaf) 0-6 (Fall 1:57)
Quarterfinal – Tanner Vassar (Augsburg) 20-6 won by fall over nick gravdahl (Concordia-Moorhead) 1-2 (Fall 3:23)
Cons. Round 2 – Helton Vandenbush (MSOE) 19-10 won by decision over nick gravdahl (Concordia-Moorhead) 1-2 (Dec 8-3)
Aiden Jolley (0-2) place is unknown and scored 0.0 team points.Champ.
Round 1 – Grant Wedepohl (Wis.-Platteville) 26-12 won by fall over Aiden Jolley (Concordia-Moorhead) 0-2 (Fall 2:32)
Cons. Round 1 – Austin Stebane (Wis.-Stevens Point) 14-15 won by fall over Aiden Jolley (Concordia-Moorhead) 0-2 (Fall 4:57)
Jacob Arends (1-2) place is unknown and scored 1.5 team points.
Champ. Round 1 – Natan Jara (Wheaton (IL)) 1-2 won by decision over Jacob Arends (Concordia-Moorhead) 1-2 (Dec 10-5)
Cons. Round 1 – Jacob Arends (Concordia) 1-2 won by major decision over Max Schmitz (Wis.-Platteville) 10-16 (MD 12-4)
Cons. Round 2 – Duncan Heath (MSOE) 17-9 won by decision over Jacob Arends (Concordia-Moorhead) 1-2 (Dec 7-4)
Noah Carter (2-1) placed 8th and scored 6.0 team points.
Champ. Round 1 – Konrad Ernst (Wis.-La Crosse) 23-0 won by fall over Noah Carter (Concordia-Moorhead) 2-1 (Fall 1:02)
Cons. Round 1 – Noah Carter (Concordia-Moorhead) 2-1 won by fall over Stepan Naldzhyan (Pacific (OR)) 0-2 (Fall 4:41)
Cons. Round 2 – Noah Carter (Concordia-Moorhead) 2-1 won by decision over Tyler Burt (Wis.-Eau Claire) 1-2 (Dec 10-4)